Shimer College

Society, Culture and Personality Course in Chicago

This course studies the relationship of the individual human being to the society of which he or she is a member.

Ruth BenedictRuth BenedictBy critically studying this relationship, we ask whether the individual is really free or is determined by society’s norms, and whether these norms themselves might be a product of individual or social creation. Other considerations in the course include the development of personality and the role of culture.

Reading List

  • Sigmund Freud, New Introductory Lectures on Psychoanalysis
  • Jean Piaget, The Moral Judgment of the Child
  • Ruth Benedict, Patterns of Culture
  • Lawerence Kohlberg, “Moral Stages and Moralization”
  • Nancy Chodorow, “Family Structure and Feminine Personality”
  • W.E.B. DuBois, The Souls of Black Folk
  • Carol Gilligan, In a Different Voice
  • Émile Durkheim, Suicide
  • Karl Marx, selections
  • Max Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism